Ulster loyalism

Ulster loyalism

Ulster loyalism is a militant unionist ideology held mostly by Protestants in Northern Ireland. Some individuals claim that Ulster loyalists are working-class unionists willing to use violence in order to achieve their aims. [Steve Bruce, "The Red Hand: Protestant Paramilitaries in Northern Ireland", 1992] However, others, such as Garrett Fitzgerald, argue that loyalism is simply "loyalty to Ulster not to the Union with Britain and it is mis-described as unionism." [Fergal Cochrane, "Unionist Politics and the Politics of Unionism since the Anglo-Irish Agreement", 2001]

Unionists support the continuation of Northern Ireland's status as a constituent country of the United Kingdom and oppose any joining with the Republic of Ireland in a united Ireland. However, whilst some loyalist groups seek to maintain Northern Ireland's position within the UK they are not defined by this aim and some, such as the Ulster Defence Association, have openly supported the idea of Ulster independence. Unionists also believe in achieving their aims through purely constitutional means, but are willing to use violence to defend the constitutional process. However loyalists support the use of militant methods as the primary means to reject amalgamation with the Republic of Ireland. Consequently, anti-Unionists and anti-Loyalists frequently use the term "loyalist" to describe illegal paramilitary organisations.

Upon the Partition of Ireland in 1921, six of the nine counties in the province of Ulster were excluded the independent Irish Free State (later the Republic of Ireland). These counties, four out of the six having (at the time) Protestant majorities Fact|date=September 2008, remained a part of the United Kingdom. Two other Ulster counties also remained part of the UK, despite having narrow nationalist (pro-independence) majorities Fact|date=September 2008. Both unionist and nationalist communities have allowed or encouraged sectarianism among Protestants (associated with unionism) and Roman Catholics (associated with nationalism) to further political aims Fact|date=September 2008.

The difference of opinion between Northern Ireland's Nationalist Catholic population (which mostly supports leaving the UK in favour of uniting with the Republic of Ireland) Fact|date=September 2008 and its Protestant Unionist population (which mainly supports remaining as part of the United Kingdom) has led to a long-running bloody conflict known as "The Troubles". However, the majority of people who live in the region do not support paramilitaries of any ideology Fact|date=September 2008.

Political parties

*Progressive Unionist Party
*Ulster Democratic Party

Bigger parties like the Ulster Unionist or Democratic Unionist parties have actively sought to distance themselves from loyalist paramilitary activity. However, Ian Paisley and his Democratic Unionist Party have worked alongside loyalist paramilitary groups such as the UDA in the 1974 Ulster Workers' Council Strikes and the 1977 Loyalist Association of Workers strike [citation needed] .


*Orange Order
*Apprentice Boys of Derry
*Independent Orange Order

Paramilitary groups

*Ulster Volunteer Force
*Ulster Defence Association
*Loyalist Volunteer Force
*Ulster Protestant Volunteers
*Orange Volunteers
*Red Hand Commandos
*Red Branch Knights
*Ulster Resistance

Youth groups

*Ulster Young Militants
*Young Citizen Volunteers

Umbrella organisations

*Combined Loyalist Military Command
*Ulster Loyalist Central Co-ordinating Committee

Other loyalist organisations

*Loyalist Association of Workers
*Tara (Northern Ireland)
*Ulster Political Research Group
*Ulster Workers Council


External links

* [http://www.ulsterloyalists.co.uk/ Loyalist, Unionist and Protestant Resources]
* [http://www.beyondconflict.net/site/default.asp Beyond Conflict] - A South-East Antrim organization linked with the Ulster Defence Association
* [http://www.pup-ni.org.uk/home/default.aspx Progressive Unionist Party] - Centre-Left and Social Democratic Loyalist party linked with the Ulster Volunteer Force.
* [http://www.englishloyalists.net English Loyalists]
* [http://www.scottishloyalists.co.uk Scottish Loyalists]
* [http://www.britishulsteralliance.co.uk/ British Ulster Alliance]
* [http://www.loyalistfm.net/new/ Loyalist FM]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ulster nationalism — For Irish nationalism in Northern Ireland, see Irish nationalism#Northern Ireland. The unofficial flag of the Ulster Nation proposed by Ulster nationalists. Ulster nationalism is the name given[1][2 …   Wikipedia

  • Ulster Unionist Party — UUP redirects here. For the chemical element, see Ununpentium. Ulster Unionist Party Leader Tom Elliott MLA Chairman …   Wikipedia

  • Ulster Scots people — Ethnic group group=Ulster Scots poptime= Ulster Scots 20 30 million worldwide population popplace= Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland popplace = region1 = flagcountry|United States pop1 = 5,289,309 ref1 = region2 = flagcountry|Ulster pop2 =… …   Wikipedia

  • Ulster Movement for Self-Determination — The Ulster Movement for Self Determination was a minor political movement in Northern Ireland that sought independence for Northern Ireland.Formed in 1986, after emerging from the Ulster Clubs, the UMSD took as its emblem a map of the nine… …   Wikipedia

  • Ulster Loyalist Central Co-ordinating Committee — The Ulster Loyalist Central Co ordinating Committee (ULCCC) was set up in 1974 in the aftermath of the Ulster Workers Council Strike, in order to facilitate meetings and policy co ordination between the Ulster Workers Council, the loyalist… …   Wikipedia

  • Ulster Protestant Volunteers — The Ulster Protestant Volunteers were a loyalist paramilitary group established in Ulster in the late 1960s, to prevent Prime Minister of Northern Ireland Terence O Neill from introducing reforms in the governance of Northern Ireland. [… …   Wikipedia

  • Loyalisme d'Ulster — Drapeaux loyalistes Le loyalisme d Ulster est une idéologie militante syndicaliste[réf. nécessaire] tenue principalement par les protestants en Irlande du Nord. Certaines personnes affirment que les loyalistes d Ulster sont des personnes… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • List of Ulster-related topics — The territorial extent covered by the term Ulster may vary, reflecting the prevalent deep political and cultural divisions. The province of Ulster, one of the historic four provinces on the island of Ireland comprising nine counties, six in… …   Wikipedia

  • Mid Ulster English — Approximate boundaries of the English and Scots dialects spoken in Ulster. It should be noted that Ulster Scots (light blue) is not spoken in the entire shaded area – light blue indicates both current and historical Ulster Scots areas. The… …   Wikipedia

  • Lealismo en Ulster — Mural lealista en Belfast, dedicado a S.M. la Reina Madre de Inglaterra En la nación constitutiva británica de Irlanda del Norte, el término lealismo refiere una ideología que se opone a la unificación de la isla de Irlanda en un solo Estado. Los …   Wikipedia Español

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”